What Are Some Popular Appetite Stimulants?


Quick Answer

Some medications that stimulate appetite are megestrol acetate and dronabinol, according to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. Steroids such as prednisone and anti-depressants such as mirtzapine are also helpful for stimulating appetite. Pancreatic cancer is one disease that causes weight loss, and its treatment require the use of appetite stimulants.

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Full Answer

Doctors prescribe appetite stimulants for various diseases that cause cachexia, which is weight loss and lack of nutrition caused by a chronic illness. Some disorders that cause weight loss are cancer, viral infections such as HIV and gastroenteritis. Parasites, depression and hyperthyroidism are other causes of extreme weight loss, as MedicineNet explains. Additionally, doctors sometimes prescribe appetite stimulants to people suffering from anorexia.

Megestrol acetate is an appetite stimulant, and some of its side effects include high blood sugar as well as numbness or weakness on one side of the body, reports Rxlist.com. If taken by a pregnant woman, this medication can cause harm to the child.

Another appetite stimulant is dronabinol. This is a man-made compound that contains tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabinoids found in marijuana, according to MedicineNet. In addition to increased appetite, some effects of this medication include short-term memory loss, euphoria and enhanced sensation. Doctors often prescribe it to those with HIV or people undergoing chemotherapy to prevent nausea and increase appetite.

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